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The Citizens Bank Park “Pistachio Girl” . . . is a white nationalist

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A lot of ballparks have colorful vendors. We’ve talked about the Spring Training/Diamondbacks’ vendor who does the “Lemonade, lemonade like grandma made!” thing in the past. The Tigers used to have a hot dog guy who sang opera as he vended. There’s a “Beer Pirate” in Pittsburgh. The list goes on and on, with many of them featured over at MLB.com in this article last year.

One of the vendors featured there was the “Pistachio Girl” of Citizens Bank Park. Her name is Emily Youcis and she’s popped up in the fringes of sports news a few times. I’ve not been to a game at Citizen’s Bank Park, but I’ve heard people talk about her. She’s a lot like any of these other colorful vendors. Some people love her, some people are somewhat annoyed. She doesn’t even sell pistachios anymore because the Phillies discontinued them so she hawks Cracker Jack. Life goes on. Either way, she came in second in the MLB.com poll for top vendor.  Check her out in action:

Despite it not being baseball season, she’s in the news today. Seems that, however colorful her vending style is, she has a favorite color: white. And that led to some difficulties for her over the weekend. From Philly.com:

A well-known Phillies vendor called “Pistachio Girl” for her melodic hawking of peanuts and Cracker Jack at Citizens Bank Park found herself in a radically different arena this weekend — in the middle of a violent street fracas outside a white-nationalism conference that she was attending in Washington, D.C.

She was an observer of the conference, not an attendee, but she tells Will Bunch of the Philadelphia Daily News that “she’s been in thrall with the so-called ‘alt-right’ movement for about 10 months.” Which she calls “a white identity movement.” She said “This doesn’t mean that we hate anybody — we simply want to find our own identity as Americans … as white Americans, and find our own culture.”

Not everyone considers “white identity movements” to be simple searches for identity, and thus you may not be surprised to learn that there were protests of the conference. The protests got ugly and Youcis got spray paint sprayed on her hair. Others suffered minor injuries which is unfortunate, no matter what ideology one harbors. One may protest whatever one desires as vehemently as one desires, but one hopes the line is drawn at physical violence.

One does wonder, however, how her Cracker Jack sales are going to go next summer given her newfound notoriety. Because, no matter what the headlines are saying about it lately, white nationalism is not exactly a super popular ideology.

Sean Manaea pitches the first no-hitter of 2018

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Athletics southpaw Sean Manaea delivered his first career no-hitter against the Red Sox in a decisive 3-0 victory on Saturday night. Any thought of a perfect game was banished in the first at-bat, when Mookie Betts drew a leadoff six-pitch walk to open the first inning. From there, Manaea was nearly flawless, holding the Sox to four total baserunners and striking out 10 of 30 batters faced — a career record.

Manaea was gifted a three-run lead thanks to RBI doubles from Jed Lowrie and Stephen Piscotty and Marcus Semien‘s solo shot off of Chris Sale in the fifth inning. While the Red Sox managed to draw two walks off of Manaea, they didn’t come anywhere close to plating a run. Andrew Benintendi tried to break up the no-no in the sixth inning with an infield hit down the first base line, but strayed out of bounds and later saw his hit reversed on a call of batter interference.

Entering the ninth inning, the 26-year-old lefty was sitting at just 95 pitches through eight frames of no-hit ball. He quickly deposed Blake Swihart and Mookie Betts with a groundout and fly out, then walked Benintendi on seven pitches. Any threat the Red Sox might have posed was soon eliminated, however, as Hanley Ramirez ground into a force out to complete the no-hitter.

Manaea is the first A’s pitcher to toss a no-no since Dallas Braden’s perfect game against the Rays eight years ago. The last time the Red Sox were on the losing end of a no-hitter was also against an AL West rival, when the Mariners’ Chris Bosio clinched a 2-0 no-no on April 22, 1993. Manaea’s feat is even more outstanding given how dominant the Red Sox have looked this season: prior to Saturday’s defeat, they boasted a 17-2 record and had yet to be shut out during the regular season.